Aoyama Gakuin University (JAPAN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2021 Proceedings
Publication year: 2021
Pages: 522-527
ISBN: 978-84-09-34549-6
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2021.0183
Conference name: 14th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 8-9 November, 2021
Location: Online Conference
The focus of this study was on improving cross-cultural communication skills and widening the worldviews for developing intercultural awareness and 21st-century skills. The participants were thirty Japanese university students studying English and presentation skills through various topics derived from the concept of epistemology and ontology this semester from April 2021 to July 2021. Students delivered several presentations on SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals), Global leadership, and Cross-cultural quotient about different cultures, and Science and Theology. This provided training in higher-order thinking skills while enabling students to consider what makes us human compared with the ability of AI (Artificial Intelligence). The online lessons were conducted using the following pedagogy: FL (Flipped learning), TBL (Task-based learning). The pedagogical training focused on helping students find solutions to many issues from Oxford University websites such as Oxford Martin School and Said Business School, now faced by humanity in the 21st century. Throughout the 15-week online program, training in higher-order thinking skills and integrating the use of ICT/AI and human dialogue with young overseas people was emphasized. The students used AI speaker (Alexa) outside the class to brush on listening and speaking skills about SDGS. The students (n=30) delivered final presentations about what they learned throughout the 15-week program, which were evaluated using the PeerEval software.

The learning procedures were as follows:
1) Flipped and TBL lessons were conducted throughout 15 weeks, actively engaged in presentations with slides and discussions about the abovementioned contents. Sometimes they made MP4 video presentations.
2) All students (n=30) had their English lessons using real-time virtual learning with ZOOM. In addition, students engaged in discussion with young foreign people every three weeks to learn cross-cultural communication skills and worldviews.
3) They delivered several presentations in front of all students. They joined breakout sessions in a group of 4 students and gave their presentations with peer assessment using PeerEval software on smartphones.
4) Several overseas professors gave lectures on scientific realism, worldviews, and cross-cultural quotient, and the students prepared PowerPoint slides with more presentations and discussions using ZOOM breakout sessions.
5) Other than virtual classroom lessons, students were encouraged to use Alexa with a smartphone to improve listening and speaking skills, mainly focusing on SDGs outside the classroom.
The students benefited from the language and cultural exchanges with young foreign people and provided positive feedback about 15 -week virtual classroom lessons. Moreover, a post-training survey revealed that students were impressed by integrating the dialogue with young foreign people in breakout sessions and ICT/AI. This also impacted their perspectives on studying cross-cultural communication skills and different worldviews and provided contextualization and socialization to their learning through the interactive and meaningful context of the training. Students felt they helped widen their worldviews and the effective use of ICT, time, location, and easy access even during the COVID-19. Finally, the results of the OPIc speaking test and questionnaire will be explained in detail.
Ontology, Epistemology, Worldviews, CBL, PBL, Flipped Learning, Integration of human interaction and ICT/AI.